2 Pampanga cops in drug bust accused of robbery-extortion

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CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga – Two policemen including a commissioned police officer have been accused of robbery-extortion for allegedly demanding P30,000 in exchange for settling an illegal drugs case.

Chief Supt. Amador Corpuz, director of Central Luzon PNP, also ordered the investigation and the filing of criminal and administrative charges against Senior Inspector Philipp Pelle and SPO1 Jessie Lopez, both detailed at Magalang, Pampanga police station.

“The filing of criminal charges, disciplining and dismissing erring police personnel only shows that the PNP is sincere in its campaign against bad eggs in the police force, and that the rule of law does not distinguish rank, position or popularity,” said Corpuz in a statement.

Corpuz described their action as “a clear manifestation of our keen determination to remove misfits among the ranks of our organization.” He said that a case for Violation of Article 293 of the Revised Penal Code (Robbery Extortion) is being readied against them.

Senior Supt. Joel Consulta, director of the Pampanga Provincial Police Office (PPO), said Lopez was initially collared by plainclothes policemen in an entrapment at Barangay San Nicolas ll in Magalang town Tuesday.

Lopez went to the residence of Maricar Tapnio Canlapan, 38, wife of a suspected illegal drugs trafficker earlier arrested during a buy bust. The policeman demanded P30,000 from Canlapan in exchange for a settlement.

Unknown to Lopez, Canlapan sought the help of the Provincial Public Safety Company which planned the entrapment.

Consulta said Lopez was caught red-handed receiving marked money from the victim. He disarmed the policeman and seized two units of cellular phones shortly after the entrapment.

Pelle eluded arrest and is now the subject of a manhunt by the police.

Because of the incident, Corpuz ordered the relief of Superintendent Suptal Cabauatan, Magalang police chief, while the robbery extortion case against Pelle and Lopez is under investigation.